ALEXANDRIA, Va. -- Local and federal officials say they've dismantled a trafficking network that ferried drugs from the Sinaloa cartel in Mexico through California to multiple drug dealing organizations around the nation’s capital.
The investigation began in 2017 with a Loudoun County, Virginia, sheriff's deputy assigned to a Drug Enforcement Administration task force.
Operation Angels Envy eventually stretched to seven states and resulted in more than 30 arrests, the seizure of more than 100 firearms; $6 million in cash, jewelry and other valuables; 473 pounds of methamphetamine; 42 kilograms of fentanyl; and 129 kilograms of cocaine.
Additionally, one specific seizure in Loudoun, which included 50 kilograms of cocaine and $1.4 million in cash, was the largest in the county's history.
Officials said an estimated 90,000 people in 2020 died nationally from drug overdoses, mostly from opioids. That is an increase of around 27% from 2019.
In fact, Sheriff Mike Chapman said investigators "seized enough Fentanyl to kill every man, woman, and child in Loudoun County -- two times over” last year.
"Much like these drugs having a far-reaching impact in our country, I am proud to say the work of our detectives in Loudoun County in combination with other DEA Task Force members had an even further impact on the operations of the Sinaloa Cartel,” Chapman said.